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Old April 14th, 2011, 11:18 AM   #46
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
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Re: Balancing a glidecam !?

Chris, I'm glad you are happy with your Cinecity gear. I am however guessing you haven't tried the Steadicam brand versions of the comparable gear as you would probably indicate an even wider gap between the two.

I post this just as a bit of a warning to Lisa who might be thinking that she can get into something that closely approximates the $2000 Merlin/Pilot vest and arm for a fraction of the cost; Lisa, you noted that amount for the vest--the arm is the really critical element of that combo. The isoelastic technology that Tiffen uses is unequalled for the small stabilizers and is far more sophisticated than the basic spring arm that Cinecity and other manufacturers are forced to use to avoid patent issues. What you will tend to see with this design and a very light rig like a Glidecam with DSLR is a lot of bouncing when you walk due to non-linearity in the arm design. Frankly even the Merlin/Pilot arm suffers from this a little bit when used with a stabilizer this small, not because of design issues, but because there is so little weight being carried on the arm (it works great used in conjunction with a slightly heavier rig like the Pilot).

If however the intention is not so much to achieve perfectly smooth images but to relieve the weight of the system from the hands, then this is a reasonably priced solution. I will note that I have heard complaints from people who have purchased Cinecity stabilizers regarding design and build quality--but that is to be expected at this price point.
Charles Papert
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Old April 14th, 2011, 07:33 PM   #47
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Location: Perth, Western Australia
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Re: Balancing a glidecam !?

Hi Charles

I'm not for one moment offering the option as a replacement..rather than an drastically less expensive option!! Lisa has family and home costs to content with before buying gear and the Comfort Vest WILL help her get better footage than a quivering and aching arm trying to hold a sled up.

What's the expression?? "You have to cut your suit according to the cloth????" Yep I have used a Flyer LE and it's a remarkable and beautifully made piece of machinery ..over here it's around $9000.00 new. Unless you are doing enough work to justify a $9K investment then simple business sense says look for alternatives. If I could justify the cost of an LE against the work it does in my weddings then yes, I would grab one. I'm currently using their new 5500 and it's way ahead of the older flycams fact the first one that works "out of the box" with no alignment or balance issues at all.

If Lisa was a full-time wedding DSLR specialist with 5D MarkII's and a myriad of lenses making maybe $200,000 a year then it would be silly to suggest an Indian Rig over a Full Merlin or Flyer as her income would support the purchase easily. She's a hardworking mom with little spare cash who does this as a hobby hence the "cheaper" suggestion.

Still gotta love the genuine Steadicam rigs though!!!! One day????

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Old April 16th, 2011, 01:35 AM   #48
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Location: Seattle WA
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Re: Shoulder to Wrist Support Idea

Originally Posted by Lisa Maxwell View Post
I do work out, a lot. But I'm still a woman, and my wrist and forearms I guess are never gonna be that strong. Maybe my husband will be the glidecam man then. It seems like everything I've been buying lately keeps leading to more and more expensive purchases...DSLR, welll, I need at least two, then I need a belt/bag to stash it all in, then I need a chair to edit in so my back doesn't kill me within an hour, then I need...and on and on...
With regard to the chain of purchases, that's been my problem. While looking for a new video camera I was given one by a relative. It had a built-in mic that didn't provide the audio I wanted so I bought a mic. Well, it was an XLR model and the camera had a 3.5mm mini input, so then a Pre-amp was required, and so on and on it went. Three mics later, video tripod, three-light LED setup, reflector, umbrella, ...... so I can relate.

Okay, to tired arm issue. I got a Glide Cam 2000 with a wrist support and I have to say the wrist support works very good. It really helps to keep the wrist from getting tired and worn out, but like the equipment purchases example, it just transfers the load to the next joint which is the elbow.

Solution (maybe): Come up with a shoulder harness that will allow one to attach an elastic material like a shock cord to the top of the right shoulder (if you're right handed) and run it down to the wrist. The cord being strong enough to offset the weight of the gear, like a counter balance. The shoulder harness would have to not allow the cord attach point to rotate forward. Maybe a webbing from the attach point down the back to, say, a belt. If you're wearing a battery pack maybe it could go to the belt holding it.

Plan B: If all else fails, call Glide Cam and talk to their model and ask her how she does it?

Plan C: Last resort (or maybe the first resort?) Dump the darn thing on your husband and tell him it's all his.
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Old June 23rd, 2011, 09:32 PM   #49
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Mesa, AZ
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Re: Balancing a glidecam !?

Hi all! Just joined the ranks after finding a killer deal on a mint GC HD4000 with vest and arm. Got the sled balanced (thanks for all the posts on how to get it just right!) Its setup with my XF300 and with the help of a friend who's been using the Pilot for a few years, should be able to get up to speed pretty quickly.

Can't wait to offer my clients this service! (and before anyone says it, I will still be hiring my friend as he's really good and flies a 5D and a Red. Totally different look)
A7RII, C100, 1Dx, 5Dmk3, 70D, Kessler goodies, Adobe, Pro Tools and more!
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